Home of the Week: A reno adds some flair to a Victorian semi
Reposted from http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/home-and-garden/real-estate/a-reno-adds-some-flair-to-a-victorian-semi/article19143594/
The back story
In a lot of ways, 520 Manning Ave. was as typical a Victorian semi as you’d find in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood.
It had many original features, such as the big bay front windows, but had suffered many repairs and a poorly done back addition. The backyard was like a sad school playground: absent of grass but abundant in cement.
So it was no surprised, that the owners of the house (who did not want to be named in this piece) sought the help of architect and principal of Building Arts Architects, Jason Smirnis, to breathe some life back into the home.
“Given the amount of space [the owners] needed and wanted, I suggested that instead of adding more and wasting your budget, let’s fix up what you’ve got and make it better,” Mr. Smirnis said.
So the renovation crew went about demolishing the “saggy” back addition and fixing the foundation of the house, before they opened up the first floor by removing the wall that cordoned off the living room and dining room from the unnecessary hallway that ran alongside the staircase. In its place, they built a bookshelf “to keep [the space] more transparent” and to add some much needed storage. They also added a wall of cupboards that extends from the kitchen to the staircase and hides the entrance to the basement.